zana16: The Beatles with text "All you need is love" (Default)
But fuck it. California, you fucking let us down.

Let me tell you about my cousin. My cousin is a gorgeous thirty-something elementary school teacher. She met the love of her life. They moved in together and were all set to live happily ever after.

Then a few years ago, in San Francisco, there was an experiment. Same-sex couples were issued marriage licenses, mostly to see if the legal challenges could stand up in court. My cousin and her partner got married. They'd never expected to be able to do that. But they did.

And the court told them their marriage didn't count.

They started to plan on having kids. They decided to have a commitment ceremony. Which was gorgeous, and I'm lucky enough to belong to a family where same-sex couples are a non-issue. Everyone was happy for them, though after the ceremony several people said privately wouldn't it be great if this were "real", but fortunately they didn't say this in the presence of the brides.

Outside of a small circle of friends, their marriage wasn't "real."

They had two wonderful children together, and had to go through a zillion legal hoops so that their children could belong to both of them, that there'd be clear custody if one of them were to die or something. Which was shitty about the legal hoops, but awesome about the kids, who are possibly the cutest things ever (not that I'm biased or anything).

Then, then California seemed like it was getting its act together. The courts said that marriage licenses to same-sex couples would be recognized now. We all rejoiced.

So a few months ago, my cousin and her wife of five years got married for a third time.

And now you fuckers tell them that their marriage doesn't count. That commitment means nothing. That their love is somehow not valid because... because why? Seriously, I just don't get it.

It makes me sick to my stomach.
zana16: The Beatles with text "All you need is love" (Default)
I need a better "patriotism" icon.

Anyways, it's Veteran's Day, which has become more of an annoyance than anything meaningful to those of us trying to use public transportation -- and there wasn't a train from Baltimore today, so we had B over for the night so she could get to work this morning. Also the pool was closed.

But. It's Veteran's Day, and it's important. We can and should do better by our vets, and I'm not going to prose on about it, because that's really it: can and should. We should take care of the people who fight and die for us. Yes, even if we think the wars are pointless and stupid.

This isn't my favorite Tom Russell song by any means, but it's a Veteran's Day song, so here 'tis: Veteran's Day.
zana16: The Beatles with text "All you need is love" (Default)
I thought this was kind of cool...

Dear friends,

I spent the very early hours of this morning sitting in front of a tv with about 10 Rwandan friends who stayed up the whole night to watch all the results come in. They screamed and cried tears of joy and pride when Obama won.

But surprisingly, their favorite part of the whole evening? McCain's speech!

They watched in wonder and amazement as McCain spoke highly of Obama and said that we need to now come together as a country to support him. They said "Can you believe this?? The loser is now supporting and congratulating the winner! He is telling America to come together as one country to support the new president, even though he lost!! Could you imagine if something like this happened in Africa!! Only in America!!"

Friends from across Rwanda called me all morning to say congratulations- and some just screamed into the phone and I couldn't understand a word of what they were saying.

On the other hand, there is a great deal of suffering and violence going on across the border in Congo right now. Today's victory and celebration of freedom provides a stark contrast to the daily reality of brutality and oppression in so many places in Africa.

Living in a country free of violence is such a luxury.... we should never forget how truly lucky we are.

Love from Kigali,
zana16: The Beatles with text "All you need is love" (Default)
Tuesday night was fucking amazing. We broke out the champagne early, way before any results were in--we all remembered last election. And then we started seeing results, and the screaming started.

Later we went down to a drum circle on U St, and as the last metro went in the middle of Obama's acceptance speech, I was stranded downtown, and I swear downtown DC has never been so happy.

93% of DC voted for Obama. Perfect strangers were hugging and kissing on the street. Cars were blaring their horns. Everyone was screaming. I don't think there was any crime Tuesday night in DC; everyone was just too blissed out.

It was like... I can't describe the energy. It was like when I was living in Spain and Bilbao Athletic won the futbol Cup, and the city shut down for three days. The streets ran red with kalimotxo and wine. Looked like blood. We partied for three days. The energy on Election Night, downtown, was like that on steroids. Like the home team had won, and finally, finally, I actually gave a damn about the sport.

I finally got a cab home with two guys who looked like extras in a rap video, a Native American, and a guy from Dublin. The cab driver said he wouldn't charge me a dime if I would take over honking the horn for him. I think we were all a little high--and I was definitely very, very drunk by that point. Drunk enough to try walking home on my bum foot... feeling no pain.

It was the first election where the candidate I voted for actually won--I was beginning to think I was cursed. I hope to God this isn't the only election that will be this meaningful for so many people, but I feel so blessed that I was able to see this one.

Finally, the song. This is the song I was going to post if we'd lost. It's brought me a lot of comfort over the past year or so, and now it no longer applies, so I thought I'd post it as a kind of "goodbye" to the song: Austin Lounge Lizards, We've Been Through Some Crappy Times Before
zana16: The Beatles with text "All you need is love" (Default)
Oh my god oh my god oh my god!

zana16: The Beatles with text "All you need is love" (Default)
The Huffington Post has an article about long lines for early voting. I'm seriously considering getting up at five am tomorrow so I won't be late for work. And Rachel Maddow of MSNBC has a nice piece on the same page about long lines are, essentially, a poll tax.

Seriously, it's voter suppression when you don't put enough voting machines in a city to prevent long lines. *ahem* columbus ohio *ahem*

Fortunately my boss won't be in til noon, so if I'm late she'll never know. But I'm also privileged in that I don't need my job or that income so desperately that I can't take off a few hours to be bored in line to do my civic duty.
zana16: The Beatles with text "All you need is love" (Default)

Laughing my ASS off!

Here's the story: the media company I work for has a contract with Project Vote, which works with ACORN. Which means we do some media stuff for ACORN from time to time.

Look, ACORN does good work, and the whole Republican "voter fraud" thing was completely baseless and ACORN had to turn in by law even the bogus registration cards, but Jesus are there monkeys in that family tree.

My boss's response: "Yes, but did she register people while she was soliciting?"
zana16: The Beatles with text "All you need is love" (Default)
Please vote. It makes no difference to me if you vote for my candidate (gods, I'm not even 100% sure I'm voting for my candidate), just vote!

Google has a very cool Where You Vote feature, if you're not sure where your polling place is.

Unless your state has a Voter ID law (off the top of my head, only Indiana and Arizona do, at the moment), you don't need photo ID to vote, but bring it anyway. Poll workers aren't necessarily trained to know that you don't need it.

If there is any problem and you aren't permitted to vote, or made to cast a provisional ballot, the number to call is 1-866-OURVOTE (1-866-687-8683).

Project Vote will also have election lawyers in the following cities that have a history of election problems: Albuquerque, Cleveland, Columbus, Kansas City, Gary, Orlando and Miami.
zana16: The Beatles with text "All you need is love" (Default)
You want to know why this pisses me off?

"Former Justice Department official Jamie S. Gorelick said the new FBI guidelines on their own do not raise
alarms. But she cited the recent disclosure that undercover Maryland State Police agents spied on death penalty opponents and antiwar groups in 2005 and 2006 to emphasize that the policies would require close oversight.... German, an FBI agent for 16 years, said easing established limits on intelligence-gathering would lead to abuses against peaceful political dissenters. In addition to the Maryland case, he pointed to reports in the past six years that undercover New York police officers infiltrated protest groups before the 2004 Republican National Convention; that California state agents eavesdropped on peace, animal rights and labor activists; and that Denver police spied on Amnesty International and others before being discovered."

It's because the only reason I wasn't at those anti-death penalty meetings was because I didn't know about them. Quaker groups have had their phones tapped--again--in the belief that all that religious turn-the-other-cheek, violence-hurts-the-perpetrators-as-much-as-the-victims that Quakers spout is just a smokescreen for our underlying desire to violently overthrow Western civilization and give it to the the godless baby-eating Arabs.

I'm not a good Quaker (or a good Buddhist, or a good Christian, or a good pagan, or any of the other religions I might try on for size), but I am a good citizen. I don't want to overthrow the government. No, I don't. I want the government to reform, yes. I wouldn't shed many tears if half of DC died peacefully of a heart attack in their sleep--but I would cry if my fair city were desecrated by violence, even--especially--if my dream President took office as a result. (My dream President, btw? Jed Bartlet. It figures that I can't even get somebody close to the dream in real life; it only exists in fiction. Person I most admire on Capitol Hill? Maybe Barbara Boxer. Dunno if she'd make a good President, though.)
[ADDENDUM: Rereading this, I'm realizing that it didn't really come through that I meant this as hyperbole. I would in fact be quite distraught if half of DC died in their sleep. Also, I don't think it would actually change anything.]

If the fact that I've decided, for my own peace of mind, that I don't want the son of a bitch who murdered and raped my sister to be fried at state expense because that kind of violence feels too much like engaging in murder myself, makes me a suspected threat to national security? Then no wonder the next words out of my mouth are "Fuck national security." I may not mean them, but the temptation is there. What the fuck is up with national security when they're investigating pacifists for being terrorists? What's next? Is vegetarianism so subversive? Is the fact that I boycott Walmart and Circuit City really cause for state concern?

Yeah, yeah. If I were a good pacifist, I wouldn't get this angry. But I do. Sure, my beliefs make me a little "out there". I don't expect the government to smilingly say, "Oh, you don't like what we're doing? Have a medal and a cookie for speaking out! And we'll stop right away!" I do expect them, however, to go after the real bad guys and not investigate those of us who are just different.
zana16: The Beatles with text "All you need is love" (Default)
CNN actually did a story on McCain claiming Obama is the AntiChrist.


Jul. 21st, 2008 03:57 pm
zana16: The Beatles with text "All you need is love" (Default)

Hey George W. Bush.

Look man, you seem like a pretty nice guy and all, but you just can’t freaking run a country. I mean, what the hell were you thinking? You suck man. That’s all I got to say.

Peace Out Bro.

"Farewell 43 is the first in an ongoing series of Presidential Farewell Gift Books. It is an un-biased, un-affiliated, un-partisan, free-speech forum, where anyone who chooses to can submit a personal farewell message to the departing President of the United States, in this case the departing 43rd President, George W. Bush.

Farewell 43 exists solely for the opinions of those who contribute to it, not for the opinions of Farewell 43’s creators. Farewell 43 is neither left, right, pro, con, up, down, young, old, red, blue, or purple. In fact every effort has been made, including neuro-linguistic analysis, to create a web site that is in no way biased. You, however, can be just the way you are."

The "random message" button, it bringeth the funny.


zana16: The Beatles with text "All you need is love" (Default)

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